Last weekend we went to the lake. We hadn’t been there in a while and we needed to check on things. It was cold, overcast, and brown or gray everywhere. I had a stuffy head cold and didn’t want to do anything but lie around and rest. So this dull environment was the perfect place for me to be.
We have been blessed to have the opportunity to own this cabin by a lake. When we first purchased it (we were the only bidders at an auction), it needed a lot of work. So we went there almost every weekend. The house was drab, and moldy-smelling, and definitely in need of help. But it was ours, and we were excited about the possibilities held there within its walls.
We hired two local men to do remodeling jobs for us, so each of our weekend trips was filled with either the work we ourselves were doing, or cleaning up after the men’s projects and getting things ready for their next week of work.
This was back before we installed gas logs, and before we knew how a heat pump worked (“We don’t need to turn on the auxiliary heat.”) So we were cold most of that winter, and tired from the seemingly endless projects. But we looked forward to the summer, with its warmth, and water activities, and completion.
That was five years ago, and now when we go, we can relax and enjoy the place. Well, there is always some work to do, just as with any home. Because of work schedules, winter weather, and other obligations, we haven’t traveled there as many weekends this winter as usual.
So last weekend – dreary as it was – we did go and spend one night. Several weeks ago a tree had fallen on an outbuilding – a garage we never really used – and we needed to check on that. We had been previously and had seen the damage, and since the garage had been knocked off its foundation as well as sliced through “like a stick of butter” by the falling tree, we hired someone to tear it down to its block base.
Thankfully everything was in very good shape, including the remains of the demolished garage. The house heated up quickly and the local food was still good and we had a nice, restful time.
But it was so lifeless without any leaves on the trees or the green grass of the warmer months. It was a bit muddy and also very, very cold. It brought to mind all those cold weekends of a few years back. I left feeling no urgent need to return quickly.
Then as we were pulling out of the driveway to go home I noticed, over in one of the planting beds, a beautiful sight. The daffodil foliage was starting to emerge. There was about two inches of gorgeous green. I paused and looked also at the forsythia bushes, and they were swelling with anticipation of warmer days to come.
“Wonder when we’ll get back?” I asked my husband, with a new outlook. “Next time we come we might need to bring in the patio furniture.” (We do this during pollen season, when everything gets covered in a layer of spring green dust.)
If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?
(Ode to the West Wind by Percy Bysshe Shelley )